I would like to give credit where credit is due. Videos are from YouTube and other sources such as NicoNico while Oricon rankings and other information are translated from the Japanese Wikipedia unless noted.

Friday, May 17, 2013

AKB48 -- Dear my teacher

It’s kind of hard to be serious about AKB48. I must confess that I really tried a couple of years ago, but couldn’t handle the overall bad quality of the songs they periodically release. On the other side, as they have a very big discography, some songs are actually good, or at least entertaining. “Dear my teacher”, in my opinion, is one of these songs.

It must mean something that my favorite song of AKB48 is the b-side of their first single “Sakura no Hanabiratachi” (桜の花びらたち), released in February 2006, while the group was still in an indie label. What I’m trying to say is that their earlier songs were quite good. I was never the biggest of the fans of AKB48, but I can tell that their earlier songs were more sexual, challenging and risqué than the safe and happy-go-lucky songs they tend to release nowadays.

“Dear my teacher” is famous because of its clear and direct resemblance to “Oyoshi ni Natte ne TEACHER” (およしになってねTEACHER), a song released as a single by Onyanko Club (おニャン子クラブ) back in 1985. The producer and lyricist of both groups is, as we know, Yasushi Akimoto (秋元康), and the thesis that AKB48 is nothing more (or just a little more, if you prefer) than a rehash from Onyanko Club is not a surprise to anyone either. But besides all of those common points between both groups and songs, “Dear my teacher” is an interesting number by itself.

The arrangement, built around a dance beat and some disco elements, like the brass and the synth melody, is very well combined with the sexy, although young, vocals that are in charge of the sultry lyrics about a forbidden romance between a student and her teacher. Even the way which the lyrics are sung evokes provocative feelings from the girl narrating the story. It’s a very “Lolita” way of singing.

All in all, I find “Dear my teacher” a very good pop song. Of course it’s strange to have some 13 or 14 year old girls (some were older than that at the time) singing about losing their virginity with their school teacher, but it's exactly the presence of this risqué theme that makes the song work so well.

The “Sakura no Hanabiratachi” single reached #10 on the weekly Oricon charts and sold around 46,300 copies (source: generasia). “Dear my teacher” was written by Yasushi Akimoto, while the music was composed by Mio Okada (実音 岡田). As for the arrangement, it was done by Ei Ieatsu (景家淳).

1 comment:

  1. I think I carry the same feeling towards AKB48 like you do. My favorite is "Sakura no ki ni naro", especially the PV.


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